Intended for healthcare professionals

Rapid response to:

Practice Practice Pointer

Covid-19 vaccination hesitancy

BMJ 2021; 373 doi: (Published 20 May 2021) Cite this as: BMJ 2021;373:n1138

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Rapid Response:

Re: Just whose confirmation bias?

Dear Editor

If I may assist Santhanam Sundar [1] in my experience the people who are most likely to be critical of the vaccine project do not approach it from an ideological perspective or from lack of education, but rather because they have suffered some injury to themselves or their family. If they are then marginalised as “anti-vaxxers” or more politely “the vaccine hesitant” I am not sure whether this is a triumph of science or rough politics [2]?

There are perhaps no clear-cut messages from the past either [3].

[1] Santhanam Sundar, ‘Vaccine hesitancy and Confirmation bias’, 25 May 2021,

[2] John Stone, ‘Re: “Information disorder”, 26 May 2021,

[3] Alfred Russel Wallace, ‘Vaccination proved useless and dangerous: forty-five years of registration statistics’, 1889

Competing interests:, an on-line daily journal, concerns itself with the potential environmental sources for the proliferation of autism, neurological impairment, immune dysfunction and chronic disease. I receive no payment as UK Editor. I also moderate comments for the on-line journal ‘The Defender’ for which I am paid. I am also a member of the UK Medical Freedom Alliance

26 May 2021
John Stone
UK Editor
London N22